Project Profile_Morton Industrial Site_MWS_10-24-18

PROJECT PROFILE | MORTON, WA Industrial Site’s Sustainable Stormwater Solution Modular Wetlands® System

A Forterra Company

Mount Rainier Port of Tacoma, Washington

Photo Credit: George Cole

Introduction Washington is a web of rivers, tributaries, wetlands, and forests which support a seemingly endless array of wildlife species, and also the economy and population. As in any growing state, commerce, industry, and development is just as essential as the state’s natural resources. Morton, Washington is like many rural outcroppings that are tied to the economies of Seattle and Tacoma. This small town is nestled at the foothills of great Mount Rainier, surrounded by mature woodlands and wetlands adjacent to Lake Creek (which feeds the grand Tilton River). A 10-acre new construction and industrial development on the outskirts of town is home to a medical device recycling center, Stericycle. New industrial sites surrounded by Washington’s pure natural resources can be intriguing models of sustainable Low Impact Development, given the proper proven solutions. They show us how engineers and developers can successfully design stormwater systems to both achieve short and long term economic goals and comply with the Washington State Department of Ecology’s regulations and protections. Situation Stericycle’s new industrial recycling center is a 38,000-square foot property “serv(ing) thousands of customers throughout Washington,” 1 providing waste disposal solutions and hosting an almost constant volume of trucking

and delivery traffic from Olympia, Tacoma, Puyallup, Centralia, and Vancouver. Industrial related trucking generates obvious Pollutants of Concern (POCs) that will continuously collect on the newly paved parking lot and large metal-roofed building. Upon heavy rains and the “first flush” of stormwater, these pollutants typically run off and enter the environment untreated. According to the Washington Department of Ecology, “Stormwater can pick up pollution from factories and businesses. Those contaminants are carried into waterways and harm fish and other aquatic life. 2 Stormwater runoff is the leading threat to Washington’s urban waters, streambeds, banks, and habitats.” 3


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